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Grow Your Own Monsters
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Table of Contents

How to Grow Monsters Getting Started Making Monsters Feel at Home Squirting Cucumber Voodoo Lily Abyssinian Banana Cardoon Walking Stick Cabbage Venus Fly Trap Pitcher Plant Giant Echium Lychee Where to Buy Seeds and Plants Glossary

About the Author

Nicola Davies trained as a zoologist. She worked as a presenter, assistant producer and writer for the BBC before becoming an author. She now writes non fiction and fiction, for children and adults, and is a senior lecturer in creative writing at Bath Spa University. Nicola has written many non fiction titles for BBC Worldwide, for Kingfisher and for Walker Books including several in the award winning 'Read and Wonder' series: `Big Blue Whale', `Bat Loves the Night', `One Tiny Turtle', `Surprising Sharks' and 'Ice Bear'. `Surprising Sharks' became a Boston Globe Honour Book in October 2004. `Ice Bear', about Polar bears and Inuit in the Arctic, ( illustrated by Gary Blythe) was published in 2005 and won the English Society Award for young non fiction. A new title, 'White Owl, Barn Owl', will be out in Autumn 2006. Nicola's 2004 title for Walker, `Poo: A Natural History of the Unmentionable' (illustrated by Neal Layton), was the subject of an exhibition at the Rothschild Museum (part of the Natural History Museum) and has appeared in more than ten foreign language editions. It has won two prizes for science books in Italy and is shortlisted for another in Germany this year.. The next title, also illustrated by Neal Layton, `Extreme Animals', will be published in the UK in Autumn 2006. `Home', Nicola's first novel for older children, was published by Walker in 2005 and was shortlisted for the Branford Boase Award. Her second novel `Twins' is due out in 2007. In addition to writing, Nicola works with children in schools helping to develop their writing skills, using natural history as a trigger for creative writing. She is a popular author at literary festivals such as Edinburgh, Oxford, Cheltenham and the Festivaletteratura in Mantova, Italy. She has a long association with the Young Cultural Creators project and is involved in various other arts projects with children. She has been writer in residence for the Swansea Wordplay Festival and for Farms For City Chidren, among others. In 2005 Nicola organised a one day conference on children's non fiction 'Adventures in the Real World' at the Dylan Thomas Center in Swansea. She recently wrote the libretto for a children's opera, performed at the King's Hunting Lodge in Epping Forest in June 2006. Under her pen name, Stevie Morgan, Nicola has written humorous columns for the Independent, and three adult novels for Hodder and Stoughton. Some Books for ChildrenBig Blue Whale Walker Books 1997 Bat Loves the Night Walker Books 2000One Tiny Turtle Walker Books 2000 Surprising Sharks Walker Books 2002 Wild About Dolphins Walker Books 2000 Poo: A Natural History of the Unmentionable Walker Books 2004Home (older children's fiction) Walker Books 2005Twins (older children's fiction) Walker books 2007Extereme Animals Walker Books 2005Ice Bear, Walker Books 2005White Owl, Barn Owl Walker Books 2006 Some Reviews` A marvellous meeting with a Blue Whale...fills the reader with wonder...stranger than any fiction...' The Observer `... gentle, unhurried, lyrical ...' Books for Keeps `Nicola Davies is an author who gets the balance exactly right. Her scientific love of the particular translates into the precise well chosen language that so appeals to children. There is not a word too many,there is not a word out of place ... near-poetic narrative' Times Educational Supplement `If only all natural history books were as well pitched as this!' The Independent `I would not change a single word!' Books for Keeps '...I was caught, hook, line and sinker...' The Guardian Scoular Anderson is Scottish by birth. He studied Graphic Design at the Glasgow School of Art and worked as an illustrator for London University. He worked as a teacher at a comprehensive school in Scotland. He has been a freelance writer and illustrator for

Reviews

A practical guide to growing all kinds of unusual plants - not the ordinary, good looking ones that most people choose to grow! Voodoo Lilies, Venus Fly Traps, Squirting Cucumbers and Abyssinian Bananas are just some of the exotic and dramatic-looking plants that you can grow quite simply and some of them even indoors by following this book's instructions on planting and tending. Beyond the particular, the principles of home growing and the fun it gives are entertainingly introduced in this attractively illustrated book. Julia Eccleshare If you're looking for a book to inspire kids to take up gardening, this could be it. Focusing on weird plants, this hardback looks at wacky horticultural wonders such as cucumbers that shoot seeds, cabbages that grow into walking sticks and Venus fly traps that munch on insects. Amateur Gardening Everyone has a sneaking fascination for weird plants that don't behave like ordinary plants. This book explains how to grow some of them so you can see for yourself what they do... A great way to encourage an interest in the natural world. Green Parent The first nine pages are full of clear, sensible advice and worthy make-do-and-mend equipment. Scoular Anderson's illustrations, photos and diagrams contribute hugely to the clarity and visual appeal of the enterprise. Books for Keeps A painless way of instilling many of the basic principles of good gardening. Irish Garden Children will crow with delight at this book and you can tell it's going to set them on the right gardening path because what does it say right at the beginning? Only this. PLANTS WANT TO GROW! They do. So forget the ones that have withered and died because even on the first fascinated reading, children will want to rush out, buy seeds, corms and plants and grow these monsters for themselves. Best of all, it isn't difficult, either. Old tights, sheets of tinfoil, cardboard boxes, cartons and polythene are the order of the day. Watering can? Certainly. Simply take a plastic bottle, punch a few holes in the lid and Voila! There you have it. A brilliant watering can. The instructions are so clear and kindly, it's as if these gardeners are taking the reader by the hand, gently leading them to the final glory of their very own monster plant. If the plant fails to grow? No worries. They simply encourage the young gardener to start all over again. The illustrations are clear and often very funny with photographs adding to the richness of an already rich subject. A useful list of where to buy what is needed is at the back, together with a glossary that gives the meaning of each gardening term used. One for us all, I think. Armadillo Magazine This is a delightful and unusual gardening book. It provides very clear (and amusing) stage by stage illustrations and it even incorporates a list of suppliers that includes a list of suppliers that includes seedsmen in France and the USA. Recommended for primary school classrooms where teachers are sufficently green fingered. School Librarian The monsters here are large and weird. This book is about growing them at home - on a window-sill, a patio, a balcony, or just a sheltered corner of the garden. All they need is a habitat, foot covering, water and food. This is a book no child should be without. Ibby Link I love the air of excitement and optimism which bursts from every page in this delightful book. Carousel

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